In a significant move that brings to the forefront African-American aviation pioneers, the first-ever U.S. postal stamp honoring Tuskegee Airmen is due to be issued this month. The definitive stamp, which immortalizes aviation trailblazer Charles Alfred Anderson, Sr., goes on sale nationwide March 13.
The 70-cent, First-Class Mail, two-ounce rate stamp, by artist and illustrator Sterling Hundley, will be unveiled next Thursday at a dedication ceremony at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania.
It is part of the Distinguished Americans series, which since 2000 has honored people such as actor José Ferrer, athlete Wilma Rudolph, and scientist Jonas Salk. The Chief Anderson stamp is the fifteenth in the series.
C. Alfred “Chief” Anderson, also known as the “father of black aviation” was selected because he was “a pioneer in aviation who played a crucial role during World War II in training the nation’s first black military pilots, the Tuskegee Airmen,” says USPS regional spokesman Ray V. Daiutolo Sr.
In fact, when Anderson earned his air transport license in 1932, he was the only black American in the country qualified to serve as a flight instructor or to fly commercially. Later he because the first-ever American to successfully land an airplane in the Bahamas.